BY ROGER M. BALANZA
The movement trying to convince Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte to run for President is invading Ilonggo territories in vote-rich Western Visayas.
Starting off with Negros Occidental, the Pilipinas Duterte 2016 movement will flood this week the province’s capital city of Bacolod with its now popular banner emblazoned with the addition of a catchy Ilonggo phrase “Aton Ini!” (He is Ours!).
The initial foray into a major Ilonggo city will lead to a conflagration of support in Ilonggo territories for Duterte, said a confident Mar Masanguid, head of the movement. Masanguid said the efforts to convince Duterte to run is now catching fire in the Visayas Region, where Ilonggo and Cebuano are the dominant dialect. The Ilonggo vote would come as a heavy addition to the Cebuano vote if Duterte, who has his roots in Cebu, decides to take a crack at the Malacanang top post in the 2016 election.
The Negros campaign followed an “organizational” meeting held in Davao City last week which was attended by dozens of chapter presidents of the movement from the Visayas and Luzon.
We will be ready with our campaign machinery in case Duterte changes his mind and decides to run, said Masanguid.
The Masanguid group has already gathered more than 10 million signatures in a campaign started middle of last year that has covered Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.